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Book: The Kretins of Doctor Combobulay
Chapter 38: Brutally Concise Statement

Peter the Ace entered the guest quarters. It was a haven of relaxation. To the left, the three children were sitting quietly together on the lush carpet. They were gazing at the giant view-screen as colourful images of animals, machinery and food danced across the screen. To the right, on the huge soft bed, sat Sind’a Thighs and Jemima Murma. They were giggling and talking like only two well-toned and strikingly alluring young women could.

Unfortunately, Peter the Ace had to put an end to their joyous chatter, at least for now.

Sind’a Thighs noticed her superior’s arrival. She rolled off the bed and stood up straight. She bowed sweetly. “I was impressed with the manoeuvres you’ve been performing with this ship. Especially the slam at the end! We were all thrown into the corner. Even the gee-dampers couldn’t stop us!”

Peter the Ace smiled. “Yes, we did push the Blenheim hard! Glad you enjoyed it.” He looked over to Jemima Murma, who was still sitting on the bed. “Would you mind giving us a few moments of privacy?”

Jemima Murma nodded. “Certainly!” She leaped off the bed, her long and elegant red dress flowing behind her. “It’s time I changed, anyway.” She left the guest quarters.

As soon as the door closed Peter the Ace’s expression turned serious. He looked at Sind’a Thighs. “The success of our mission was not without sacrifice.”

Sind’a Thighs looked up at the first-class bounty hunter. “I know. My ship was lost, and this ship is heavily damaged due the Kretins and their…”

Peter the Ace shook his head. “Damage to equipment is common to all missions. That’s not what I mean.” He took her hands.

Sind’a Thighs gasped as the ecstasy of actual physical contact with her idol momentarily paralysed her. She blinked, and then composed herself. “What do you mean?”

Peter the Ace thought for a few seconds about the best way to break the tragic news to her. He decided that getting straight to the point was the best policy. “Jack Cardio is dead.”

Sind’a Thighs took a step back. She stared at Peter the Ace for a few seconds as she absorbed the shock of his brutally concise statement. Eventually she spoke. “How?”

“He failed to follow my advice and attempted to capture the Cifitra single-handedly. The Cifitra managed to infiltrate his ship. We had no choice but to ram the Gash Station at extreme speed. Jack Cardio was decimated along with his ship.”

Sind’a Thighs looked down to the floor. “So the ‘slam’ we experienced was when…” Her voice tailed off.

“When we rammed the Gash Station? Yes, it was.”

Sind’a Thighs’ eyes finally filled with tears. “I will miss him.” She said, her voice shaking.

Peter the Ace stepped forwards and took her in his arms. “I know.”

Sind’a Thighs sobbed. “He was so good to me, so kind and thoughtful. He pleasured me beyond what I thought was possible.” She looked up at her superior. “At least he did not suffer.”

“Actually, he suffered greatly.” Peter the Ace said, continuing his policy of brutal honesty. “Our sensors showed that the Cifitra had burst up through his groin and ruptured most of his internal organs. He was in extreme agony for a few minutes before his decimation.”

Sind’a Thighs buried her head in Peter the Ace’s chest armour and wept.

The first-class bounty hunter patted her back. “But whilst he was suffering he remained composed and professional. You can be proud of that.”

The lesser bounty hunter looked up and nodded. “I am proud.” She said. “Very proud. I hope his achievements are not forgotten.”

Peter the Ace smiled. “Don’t worry, all his achievements will be remembered with honour and respect. As tradition dictates, Jack Cardio’s name, his image and a detailed account of his death will be displayed in the Palace of Amino’s Hall of Dutiful Demise.”

Sind’a Thighs took a deep breath. “That’s good. He achieved many things.” After a few moments she forced a smile. “I have accepted his demise. I’m fine now.”

Peter the Ace grinned. “Excellent!” He motioned towards the exit. “I think you need a snack. Let’s go to the galley, shall we?”

Sind’a Thighs nodded. She dried her eyes. “What about the children?”

Peter the Ace looked at them. “They can come too. There are plenty of sugary drinks down there to keep them occupied.”

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